Beaglemania, Day 1

Beaglebone Black
Beaglebone Black

Just purchased a BeagleBone Black kit from MakerShed as part of my retirement planning (entering a 4th career phase as a tinkerer/coding teacher).

First off, had a bit of a problem finding a 5V DC power supply. One that I spent $25 on didn’t work, then found a “Verizon” 4A power adapter recommended by another Beagler. Meantime I’m testing out the networking of the little guy.

# opkg update
# opkg upgrade

That took about 3 hours, but in the midst of it, the ethernet connection was established, and I could find out the IP address of the Bone by using nmap. So far so good.

Changed the timezone (thanks, dwatts):

# cd /etc/
# rm localtime
# ln -s /usr/share/zoneinfo/America/Los_Angeles localtime

Now I’m installing emacs and trying to get the Realtek wi-fi dongle to work with my home network.  Apparently emacs doesn’t work (swallows keystrokes when used over ssh).  So I’ll have to learn nano.

The wi-fi connection is a mess.  The opkg upgrade did seem to install the realtek drivers.  Then you modify /var/lib/connman/wifi.config, and hope you put in the right parameters.  I have to reboot everytime I change this file. Then you might try removing the ethernet cable,  or just use a heftier (2A minimum) power supply, or turn off powersave for wlan0 (on startup?),:

# iw wlan0 set power_save off

Or you might have to disable IPv6 (how?).  Here’s some information from dmesg (and a little help for the reason codes):

[ 22.481941] wlan0: authenticate with 88:1f:a1:44:f3:ec
[ 22.527731] wlan0: authenticated
[ 27.594450] wlan0: deauthenticated from 88:1f:a1:44:f3:ec (Reason: 2) <- not authorized
[ 27.820069] wlan0: authenticate with cc:a4:62:cb:9b:f0
[ 28.449651] wlan0: authentication with cc:a4:62:cb:9b:f0 timed out
[ 29.338261] wlan0: authenticate with 88:1f:a1:44:f3:ec
[ 29.399841] wlan0: authenticated
[ 29.595382] wlan0: deauthenticating from 88:1f:a1:44:f3:ec by local choice (reason=3) <- went offline

Here are the packages I have installed manually:

# opkg install wireless-tools python-pip python-setuptools python-smbus
# pip install Adafruit_BBIO

Fun fact of the day: If the Beaglebone is plugged into an ethernet network, it broadcasts its name using Bonjour.  So you can do this if you’re on the same subnet (like on a Mac in the Terminal):

# ping beaglebone.local
# ssh root@beaglebone.local

Or open Cloud9 by going to http://beaglebone.local:3000 (!)